From an Old French personal name of Germanic (Frankish) origin, derived from wald ‘rule’ + heri, hari ‘army’. This was adopted by the Normans and introduced by them to England, superseding the native Old English form, Wealdhere. It was a very popular name in medieval England, normally pronounced ‘Water’.
English: habitational name from either of two places, in Kent and Cheshire, called Egerton. The former is so called from Old English Ecgheardingtūn ‘settlement (Old English tūn) associated with Ecgheard’ (see Eckert); the second, which is the main source of the surname, is more likely to have been named as the ‘settlement of Ecghere’ (in which the second element is Old English here ‘army’).